Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria are a group of free-living bacteria that colonize plant rhizosphere and benefit plant root growth, thereby increasing host plant to cope with salinity induced stress. The aim of this study was to (1) isolate and characterize auxin-producing bacteria showing a high plant growth-promoting (PGP) potential, and (2) evaluate the PGP effects on the growth of Medicago sativa L under salinity stress (130 mM NaCl). Of thirteen isolates, Bacillus megaterium NRCB001 (NRCB001), B. subtilis subsp. subtilis NRCB002 (NRCB002) and B. subtilis NRCB003 (NRCB003) had the ability to produce auxin, which ranged from 47.53 to 154.38 μg ml−1. The three auxin-producing bacterial strains were shown multiple PGP traits, such as producing siderophore and NH3, showing ACC deaminase activity, solubilize phosphate and potassium. Furthermore, NRCB001, NRCB002, and NRCB003 could survive in LB medium containing 1750 mM NaCl. The three auxin-producing with salinity tolerance strains were selected for further analyses. In greenhouse experiments, when inoculated with NRCB001, NRCB002 and NRCB003, dry weight of alfalfa significantly (P < 0.05) increased by 24.1%, 23.1% and 38.5% respectively, compared with those of non-inoculated control seedlings under normal growth condition. When inoculated with NRCB002 and NRCB003, dry weight of alfalfa significantly (P < 0.05) increased by 96.9 and 71.6% respectively, compared with those of non-inoculated control seedlings under 130 mM NaCl condition. Our results indicated that NRCB002 and NRCB003 having PGP traits are promising candidate strains to develop biofertilizers, especially used under salinity stress conditions.
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We appreciate anonymous reviewers very much for their positive and constructive comments and suggestions on our manuscript. This research was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31972503), the Natural Science Foundation of the Higher Education Institutions of Jiangsu Province (18KJB210007) and the Jiangsu Synergetic Innovation Center for Advanced Bio-Manufacture (XTE1828), China.
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Zhu, Z., Zhang, H., Leng, J. et al. Isolation and characterization of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria and their effects on the growth of Medicago sativa L. under salinity conditions. Antonie van Leeuwenhoek (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10482-020-01434-1
- Plant growth promoting (PGP)
- Bacillus sp.
- Root colonization